In 1991, Marvel published the first of four Punisher Summer Specials, because after all he only was in two regular ongoings and had only three or four one-shots or graphic novels that year.  So he needed more exposure.

Lots of good names were attached to the project: Peter David, Pat Mills, Val Mayerik, Jim Palmiotti, Dan Slott…But it was really just more of the same. Nothing really “special” here.

Except the Barbed Wire Gun. That’s pretty damn cool.

Story #1 has Punisher punishing people with a rocket launcher and the above-pictured barbed wire gun. The “hook” (no pun intended) is that his target is a sado-masochist who likes being tortured with barbed wire.

Punisher leaves him for dead, but he’ll return next summer. Oh and his name is Colonel De Sade. Of course.

This story is literally torture porn.

Story #2 is written by Peter David, one of Marvel’s best writers of the ’90s. Then an early Dan Slott story with early art by Jimmy Palmiotti, which looks more like mid/late ’90s Pun. It’s also wordless. Makes for an easy read. There’s nothing wrong with these stories, or the final tale by Will Murray and Rodney Ramos, but there’s nothing innovative or special. They’re just more very violent Punisher stories published at a time when Marvel couldn’t seem to publish enough of these kinds of stories.

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